Top 10 Major Dams in India

Did you know that there are as many as 5,334 dams in India as of 2024? Yes, some of them are under construction and set to be operational in just a few years, but still, that’s a huge number. And it goes to show how India has been focusing on preserving water sources and better utilizing this water not just for basic needs but for electricity generation as well. And today, we are here to talk about the top 10 major dams in India as of 2024. So, if you are intrigued enough to find out which are the top 10 dams that stand out the most in a huge number like 5,334, then keep on reading. Here we go.

1. Tehri Dam

Tehri Dam

Tehri Dam is for sure the tallest dam in India, located in Tehri, Uttarakhand. It is 260.5 meters high and was constructed from 1978 to 2006. This dam is mainly an earth and rock-fill embankment structure that sits on the Bhagirathi River, part of the Ganges River system. The utilities of Tehri Dam are many, like generating hydroelectric power, helping out with irrigation for agriculture, supplying water to cities, etc. It has a giant reservoir of almost 3,540 Mm3 that helps to maintain river flows and safeguard water for a big portion of the region.

2. Chamera Dam

Chamera I Dam

.The Chamera Dam is in the Chamba district of Himachal Pradesh, near Dalhousie. Completed in 1994, this dam is built across the River Ravi supports a power generation capacity of 540 megawatts, and is almost 226 meters high. This is very useful for the local economy, not only in power but also in the aspect of tourism. As you might know, Chamera Lake is famous for various water sports. And this dam offers water sports for tourists over the huge 3,913 million cubic meter reservoir, hence assisting in natural resource management alongside reservoir management.

3. Bhakra Dam

Bhakra Dam

Situated on the Satluj River in Himachal Pradesh, Bhakra Dam was one of the first large projects after India became independent. This is a great and huge concrete dam, completed in 1963, and 226 meters in height. It forms the Gobind Sagar Reservoir, having an amount of about 9.34 billion cubic meters of water, and is considered one of the country’s largest lakes that are artificial. This is very important in supplying irrigation, drinking water, and electricity to many states, including Punjab, Haryana, and Rajasthan.

4. Lakhwar Dam

Lakhwar Dam

Lakhwar Dam is still being built on the Yamuna River near Lakhwar, Uttarakhand.  The height of the completed dam will be 204 meters. Started in 1987, this project is proposed to utilize the water from the Yamuna for electricity and farm irrigation. It will be key in the management of water for states such as Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, and Haryana, providing water for farming and during dry periods with a 58 Mm3 reservoir.

5. Idukki Arch Dam

Idukki Arch Dam

Then there’s this one. Located between Kuravanmala and Kuravanmala mountains in Kerala, Idukki Arch Dam is one of the tallest arch dams in Asia at 168.91 meters. The dam constructed in the year 1975 is 168.91 meters tall and stands as a beautiful piece of double-curved design. The dam blocked the Periyar River to form a huge 1.996 km3 of a freshwater reservoir, covering 60 sq km, which is used to support a power station located close by with 780 MW capacity. The building of this dam was helped by Canadian aid, which included loans and grants.

6. Pakal Dul Dam

Pakal Dul Dam

Pakal Dul Dam is under construction in Kishtwar, Jammu, and Kashmir, and is set to be finished soon. The structure will be 167 meters long and will be able to produce 1,000 MW of electricity. Built on the Marusudar River, this is part of the Chenab River system with the purpose of increasing electricity generation in the region. It is designed with a 10-kilometer-long tunnel moving water to a power station near another dam, Dulhasti. Again, with a huge reservoir of 108,000,000 m3, this project is of great importance for sure.

7. Sardar Sarovar Dam in Gujarat

Sardar Sarovar Dam

The Sardar Sarovar Dam is on the Narmada River in Gujarat. It’s an important part of a project to help with farming and making electricity in four Indian states. The project was started in the year 1987 and inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the year 2017. The dam’s length is 1,210 meters and has a height of 163 meters, while it has a 0.95 million hectares meter reservoir that is super useful for the local as well as surrounding communities.

8. Ranjit Sagar Dam

Ranjit Sagar Dam

The Ranjit Sagar Dam, also known as Thein Dam, is on the Ravi River near Punjab and Jammu & Kashmir. Work for this one started in the year 1981, and it was completed in 2001. Reaching 160 meters in height and 617 meters in length, it became one of the highest in India. And in terms of the freshwater reservoir, it is literally huge with a number like 1.25 billion cubic meters. It facilitates around 600 megawatts of electricity and farming.

9. Srisailam Dam

Srisailam Dam

The Srisailam Dam is on the Krishna River, between Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. It was completed in the year 1981. This is a huge dam, 145 meters tall, measuring 512 meters long, serving to generate electricity and water for farming as well as solving the water problem with 178.74 Tmcft of freshwater reservoir. It can produce 1,670 megawatts of electric power, making it one of the biggest in the country. The complex is one of the biggest in the country as well. The construction of the dam was difficult because of the earthquake area, therefore, it needed special design and studies to be carried out.

10. Baglihar Dam

Baglihar Dam

143 meters high, the Baglihar Dam is on the Chenab River in Jammu and Kashmir’s Ramban district. It holds up to 475 million m³ of water at maximum. It was designed to increase the area’s power supply and was completed in two stages by 2016, each of 450 megawatts. This sparked a huge disagreement, especially with Pakistan, which said that the design of the dam was breaking a water treaty.


That’s all there is for now. These are by far the biggest major dams in the country. Sure, some of these are under construction, but they will soon be operational. And you should keep an eye out for the new dam projects because you never know when India will break the record for the tallest and the biggest dam in the country, right?

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